ardent

Bearing the Blades [Autumn Fighting Prompt]

Prompt is over, but he's open for company



Taliesyn

Valhalla
Valor

Advanced Fighter (90)
Intermediate Intellectual (45)
age
10 Years
gender
Male
gems
437
size
Other species
build
Medium
posts
66
player
Briena
12-17-2020, 12:12 AM

The stallion had much to consider since the Festival the glowing Queen had held in the spring. He’d spent his time wandering the lands, searching, but he found no sign of the mares he’d met, nor of the stallions he’d scented. Now he’d returned to his favored haunt, and grazed quietly by the stream.

Eventually he chose to circle the Dancefloor, moving at a steady trot. With no sign of Kamilah, he’d already decided that she would definitely not be the horse to start his next herd with. He was still not certain he believed her story. The age didn’t match. To have chosen such a young filly for his lead mare, that stallion must have been utterly imbecilic and inexperienced. If things had indeed happened as Kamilah had said, he didn’t blame the mares for driving her out.

He slowed to a walk, considering his choices, tail swishing. His coat was almost to full shag carpet stage, ready for winter’s chill. He, however, didn’t feel inclined to go through another winter alone, though Wangui and Isolde were wonderful company. He thought back to his mother’s stories, of her time with Valhalla and the Adravendi family. Erani and Cormalin and Erani’s children. Perhaps, now that he’d found Valhalla, he could see what the pack thought of a horse among their ranks.

He rose into a brisk trot once more. It was a possibility, certainly. It would be odd, living among predators, but it afforded a certain level of protection from other predators. Perhaps it would be temporary, perhaps it would be lifelong. He would just have to see what happened.

It was unfortunate that he managed to catch the attention of a grizzly in that moment that he made the decision to try the pack life. Isolde screeched from above as she spotted the danger, and Taliesyn bolted as the bear barreled from the tree-lined edge of the vast plain, clearly intending to capitalize on the sizeable meal Taliesyn would have provided. If it could catch him.

It wasn’t all that unusual for a grizzly to hunt when the opportunity arose, but it was certainly inconvenient for the horse. A flash of temper rushed through him, irritated that the bear would be so bold as to attempt at bringing down something as large as he was. Hunt all the elk calves and weak cows you want, but this horse was not going to tolerate the attack.

The stallion bolted to the side, whirling on his hocks and letting the bear barrel past, lunging for it as it passed, horn presented. He’d had the bladed ornament on his horn prior, and the sharpened edge slashed deep into the rather surprised ursine’s side before the stallion danced out of reach, flashing back at the bear’s rump and back legs with hard hind hooves. He heard a solid thud as one hoof made contact with the bear’s hip.

The bear bellowed in outrage and more than a little pain, hackles bristling as it twisted around and tried to put weight on the damaged leg, which buckled. It seemed the kick had dislocated the hip.

Taliesyn reared slightly, striking the ground in an open threat, coat, mane and tail blazing with light in response to his hammering heart and inflamed temper. The bear made a fatal mistake. It answered the challenge head-on with a charge. Maybe it could scare the strange horse into running, or knock it over and reach its belly and throat.

The stallion snorted and struck with a front hoof, clubbing the bear on the nose and leaping to the side, neck arching as the horse lunged once more, horn once again poised. He struck with a decisive blow, and the dazed bear toppled as the horse’s blade-adorned horn plunged into its side, slipping between the ribs with the stallion’s full weight and momentum behind it. Taliesyn wrenched himself free, darting away and blinking the blood from his eyes. He was poised to strike again, but the grizzly staggered to its feet only to drunkenly lumber forward a few steps before collapsing again.

The horse watched to be sure the bear wouldn’t rise again, then dealt a killing blow to its head with a club of his hooves to end the suffering.

He stood for a long while, gazing down at the large bear, ears flicking and swiveling. Finally, he drew a long sigh, head lowering as he took the beast in his teeth by one limp arm, pulling it onto its back with much heaving, haunches lowered to the ground and hooves bracing, forelegs adding leverage. He examined the dead bear and its hide. He didn’t know id wolves ate bears, but he’d seen plenty of bear hides for trade at the festival.

Wangui, who had clung to his back during the fight, dropped to the frosty ground, a knife in hand. With teamwork, Taliesyn and the lemur set about butchering and skinning the bear, while Taliesyn mused over how he was going to transport the unexpected kill to Valhalla. At the very least, he had a hide to offer as trade for a place to live in safety, along with his fighting skill. The bear was obvious proof that he wasn’t lying that he could fight brutally.

Word Count: 878




Walk ---- "Speak" ---- "Hear" ---- Think